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Edible OKC Swears It’s Not A Pay-for-Play Publication… and Unicorns Are Real.

Earlier this week, an Ogle Mole pointed me to a lengthy and weird Instagram post shared by Edible OKC – the very pretty and free food and drink magazine that covers the Oklahoma City restaurant and hospitality industry, especially the part with advertising budgets. 

I guess Edible recently shared the following map-style graphic on Instagram of places to visit in the Paseo, and caused some controversy in the process. 

In case you don’t get down and around the venerable Paseo often, the map didn’t include every business in the Paseo. 

As a result, an online “discussion” emerged about how magazines like Edible OKC are basically pay-to-play publications that exist to provide incredibly positive media coverage to their sponsors and advertisers.

Edible OKC took exception to this fact of life, and in a nod to the Streisand Effect, left a long and lengthy and kind of weird explanation on social media to man-splain the record straight, and inform the masses that they are not in any way a pay-for-play publication, even though we all really know that they – just like 405 Magazine or Edmond Active or The Valley Brook Pasty – pretty much are. 

Here are the slides of the apology they left on Instagram:

I hate to break it to Edible OKC, but just like with proclaiming you’re not a racist or sex offender, when you have to explain that you do not publish pay-for-play editorial work, it probably means you publish pay-for-play editorial work.

For what it’s worth, I don’t think there’s anything necessarily wrong with that. 

Whether it’s blatantly obvious like it is with Edible OKC, or more hidden like with the capitalistic controlled corporate media documented in Chomsky’s Manufacturing Consent, money and advertising ultimately control all media. The only difference is some are more subtle about it than others. 

For example, check out how Edible OKC clearly differentiates its “advertorial content” that advertisers pay for versus its other content that advertisers just indirectly pay for.

Can you pick which one of the three pages from a recent issue is a regular old article and not an ad?

It's the one on the far right. Pretty clear, huh?

As one who is fully aware that those who live in glass advertising-supported houses shouldn’t throw stones, I am totally fine admitting that advertisers totally influence Lost Ogle’s content. 

For example, check out this map of the best places in the local metro to buy lingerie, lube and sex toys that we recently shared on social media: 

Yep, that’s it. Those are the only three good spots – a.k.a. g-spots – in town to buy all the naughty stuff for your bedside table! Patricia's and The Zoo!

Anyway, instead of trying to make people think they're some independent journalism stalwart, I think Edible OKC should totally embrace being a pay-for-play publication and try to sell as much advertorial content as possible!

I doubt anyone will notice and they'll make more money in the process. Plus, they won't have to write weird apologies on social media when people call them out for it.

Stay with The Lost Ogle. We'll keep you advised.

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